By Restrainer Having Rearwardly Moving Surface Patents (Class 271/122)
  • Patent number: 6439564
    Abstract: An arrangement for feeding documents piecemeal from a document bundle (9) comprises a banknote separator (200) which includes two mutually biased rollers (4,6) that are driven by a drive motor (1) that also drives a dispensing roller (3) which functions to dispense documents from the bundle. The rollers (4,6) of the roll pair are rotationally coupled together via a freewheeling hub. The second roller (6) does not rotate during dispensing of a document. Upon completion of a dispensing operation, the drive direction of the motor (1) is reversed, so as to bring the second roller (6) to a new angular position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2001
    Date of Patent: August 27, 2002
    Assignee: De la Rue Cash Systems AB
    Inventors: Jorgen Andersson, Teru Horpu, Anders Nordin
  • Patent number: 6439563
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for feeding a currency note into a currency processing machine. This note feeder includes a transporter for transporting notes from a note stack onto a processing belt inside the currency processing machine. The note feeder also includes a mediating transporter that takes the note from the transporter and feeds the note onto the processing belt. The note feeder also includes sensors for determining when the note has left a first feeding area and entered a second feeding area and a sensor that determines when the note has entered onto the processing belt. Based on information received from the sensors, the transporter starts and stops thus providing uniform spacing between notes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 18, 2000
    Date of Patent: August 27, 2002
    Assignee: Currency Systems International, Inc.
    Inventor: Sohail Kayani
  • Patent number: 6390462
    Abstract: The paper supply device according to the present invention includes a paper support member for supporting paper, a pick-up roller which is in contact with the paper and takes the paper out of the paper support member in a specified direction, and a removing member which is kept in contact with the pick-up roller and removes adherents to the pick-up roller and such a paper supply device is used to feed paper in an image forming apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 28, 2000
    Date of Patent: May 21, 2002
    Assignee: Toshiba Tec Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Toshiaki Ouchi, Kazuto Yamamoto
  • Patent number: 6382622
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a sheet feeding apparatus comprising a sheet supporting means for supporting sheets, a feeding means for feeding the sheets on the sheet supporting means in a sheet feeding direction, a separating means for rotating in a direction opposite to the sheet feeding direction to separate the sheets sheet by sheet in pressurized contact with the feeding means and a transmitting means for transmitting drive force of the feeding means to the separating means. A circumferential speed of the separating means is set smaller than a circumferential speed of the feeding means.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 12, 2000
    Date of Patent: May 7, 2002
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Hideaki Takada, Takashi Yano
  • Publication number: 20020043756
    Abstract: A self-service terminal (10) comprising a dispenser (20) having a pick unit (44) for picking media items (64) is described. The dispenser (20) includes a drive wheel (72) for engaging with one surface of a media item and mounted on a drive wheel shaft (78), and a retard wheel (74) for engaging with an opposite surface of the media item and mounted on a retard wheel rotatable shaft (80) for rotating in the same direction as the first rotatable shaft. The drive and retard wheel shafts (78, 80) are coupled to a common drive component (98). The drive wheel (72) and the retard wheel (74) are resiliently biased together, and at least one of the shafts (78 or 80) is pivotally coupled to the common drive component (98) whereby the distance between the at least one shaft (78 or 80) and the drive component (98) remains constant as the at least one shaft (78 or 80) is displaced by a media item passing between the wheels (72, 74).
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 28, 2001
    Publication date: April 18, 2002
    Applicant: NCR Corporation
    Inventors: James D. Swinton, Bruce Dunn
  • Patent number: 6364308
    Abstract: A document feeder with overlap protection that prevents the overlap of successive documents moving from a document stack and that utilizes a nudger. An independent motor selectively drives the nudger. Document edge detectors sense the location of documents at the nudger and at other locations fed from the document stack and send control signals to the independent motor so that a proper distance is maintained between successive documents. A document edge detector can be placed at various locations along the path of document travel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 13, 1999
    Date of Patent: April 2, 2002
    Assignee: Unisys Corporation
    Inventor: Michael N. Tranquilla
  • Publication number: 20020020959
    Abstract: The sheet feeding apparatus feeds sheet media between a feed roller and a separating member pressed into contact with the feed roller, and separates and conveys sheet media held between the feed roller and the separating member one by one by utilizing differences in frictional coefficients between the feed roller, the separating member, and the sheet media. The sheet media are separated and conveyed while periodically changing the pressurizing force of the reverse roller against the feed roller.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 14, 2001
    Publication date: February 21, 2002
    Applicant: RICOH COMPANY, LIMITED
    Inventors: Masanori Matsuda, Katsuhiko Miki
  • Publication number: 20020008346
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a turning apparatus and to an insert for a turning apparatus for at least two individual stacks (5 - 7) of individual sheets. The turning apparatus according to the invention, or the insert, is characterized by at least three stack-holding plates (1 - 4) to hold at least two individual stacks (5 - 7) separately between the stack-holding plates (1 - 4), in each case in stack-holding areas (19, 20) of the stack-holding plates (1 - 4), and by spacers (8) which are provided between adjacent stack-holding plates (1 - 4) and are arranged outside the stack-holding areas (19, 20).
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 11, 2001
    Publication date: January 24, 2002
    Inventor: Manfred Rachner
  • Publication number: 20020008349
    Abstract: A method of feeding sheets includes the step of conveying the sheets between a feed roller and a separation member. The separation member is pressed against and into contact with the feed roller with a pressure applied between the feed roller and the separation member. The method also includes the steps of separating and conveying the sheets conveyed between the feed roller and the separation member one by one, and providing a cyclic change in the pressure between the feed roller and the separation member.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 29, 2001
    Publication date: January 24, 2002
    Applicant: RICOH COMPANY, LTD
    Inventor: Katsuhiko Miki
  • Patent number: 6332608
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a sheet feeding apparatus in which sheet feeding out means, while a sheet is conveyed by a sheet feed roller and a retard roller, feeds out a succeeding sheet to an abutting portion of the sheet feed roller and the retard roller so that a leading end of the succeeding sheet overlaps a trailing end of a preceding sheet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 29, 1999
    Date of Patent: December 25, 2001
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Masashige Tamura
  • Patent number: 6305684
    Abstract: The invention is a sheet feeder for engaging and removing a sheet of paper or other material from a stack and feeding it along a path. The sheet feeder can include a sheet separator designed for advancing the engaged sheet while retarding any adjacent sheets. The separator has a driven advancing roller nipped with a driven retarding roller coupled to its drive by a friction clutch. The clutch normally slips and permits the retarding roller to be driven forward by the advancing roller when one or no sheets are engaged between the advancing and retarding rollers. The clutch engages and drives the retarding roller backward so long as a multifeed of two or more sheets is engaged between the advancing and retarding rollers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 23, 2001
    Inventors: Werner R. Lightner, Donald J. Stefanich, Jr., Jim T. Russo, Jose S. Pioquinto, Paul E. Brodzik
  • Patent number: 6296245
    Abstract: A device 100 for the feeding of sheets 14 from a ream 18, with a main rotating, feeding roller 27; a tray 13 containing the ream 18; and an auxiliary roller 130 arranged adjacent to the feeding roller 27, wherein the tray 13 is suitable for moving cyclically to bring the ream 18 into contact with the feeding roller 27, so that the latter picks one at a time the sheets 14 from the ream 18 and feeds them along a path 131; and wherein the auxiliary roller 130 is adapted for rotating in contact with the sheets 14 picked by the feeding roller 27, but without pulling them and in the direction opposite their feeding direction, the object being that of opposing the picking of double sheets from the ream 18.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 19, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 2, 2001
    Assignee: Olivetti Tecnost S.p.A.
    Inventors: Gian Paolo Donnis, Attilio De Ambrogio
  • Publication number: 20010024011
    Abstract: The present invention provides a sheet feeding apparatus for separating and feeding sheets contained in sheet containing means one by one that has separating and feeding means including a feeding rotary member and a separating rotary member brought into pressure contact with the feeding rotary member and a torque limiter provided between the separating rotary member and a driving shaft wherein a coefficient of friction of the separating rotary member is set so that relations that &mgr;BC N>T/r, &mgr;BP>&mgr;CP, and T/r>&mgr;CP N>&mgr;PP N may be established among a coefficient of friction &mgr;BC between the feeding rotary member and the separating rotary member, a coefficient of friction &mgr;BP between the feeding rotary member and the sheet, a coefficient of friction &mgr;CP between the separating rotary member and the sheet, a coefficient of friction &mgr;PP between the sheets, a pressure contact force N of the separating rotary member, an idling torque T of the torque limiter and an effective
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 30, 2001
    Publication date: September 27, 2001
    Inventor: Masashige Tamura
  • Publication number: 20010024010
    Abstract: An arrangement for feeding documents piecemeal from a document bundle (9) comprises a banknote separator (200) which includes two mutually biased rollers (4,6) that are driven by a drive motor (1) that also drives a dispensing roller (3) which functions to dispense documents from the bundle. The rollers (4,6) of the roll pair are rotationally coupled together via a freewheeling hub. The second roller (6) does not rotate during dispensing of a document. Upon completion of a dispensing operation, the drive direction of the motor (1) is reversed, so as to bring the second roller (6) to a new angular position.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 22, 2001
    Publication date: September 27, 2001
    Inventors: Jorgen Andersson, Teru Horpu, Anders Nordin
  • Patent number: 6279895
    Abstract: A document feed arrangement has a nip between a feeder and a separator where documents in a stack are urged, singly into the nip and advanced therebeyond by the feeder. A continuously rotating nudger urges the documents into the nip. The nudger has an open space separation from the nip and feeder. In addition, the nudger is disposed adjacent the end document in the stack and arranged to periodically thrust the end document across the separation into the nip. As soon as the end document leaves the nudger it immediately contacts the next-to-the-end document in the stack and begins to thrust it forward. The feeder surface is defined by a large radius at the point of the nip so that the surface of the feeder bends away from the nip. The feeder advances the end document from the stack through the nip without simultaneously advancing a second document. The separator surface is defined by a smaller radius than the feeder for restraining the remaining documents of the stack.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 16, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 28, 2001
    Assignee: Unisys Corporation
    Inventor: Michael N. Tranquilla
  • Patent number: 6279893
    Abstract: An automatic sheet feeder for an image forming apparatus includes a tray to be loaded with a stack of sheets, a side guide for preventing the sheets from skewing, and a sheet feeding mechanism for sequentially picking up and feeding the sheets, the top sheet being first. The tray includes an abutment parallel to a direction of sheet conveyance. The stack of sheets abut against the abutment at one side thereof. The side guide is movable toward and away from the abutment in matching relation to the size of the sheets. The sheet feeding mechanism is positioned at the intermediate between the abutment and the position of the side guide matching with sheets of minimum size available with the sheet feeder.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 9, 1999
    Date of Patent: August 28, 2001
    Assignee: NEC Corporation
    Inventors: Kenichi Ohkawa, Kohshi Takano, Keisuke Hatomi
  • Patent number: 6276679
    Abstract: A retard module in a mail separator having a floating, middle idler to change the ingestion angle of the mail separator. The retard module further has a downstream idler, an upstream pulley driven by a motor, and an endless belt forming a loop around the idlers and the pulley to provide a retarding force against a feed module. The downstream portion of the retard belt and the belt of the feed module form a nip to ingest incoming mail. The floating idler and the downstream idler are mounted on a bracket which, in turn, is pivotally mounted on a frame of the retard module. Initially, the ingestion angle at the nip is acute and thereby reduces damage to the incoming mailpieces. But when a thick mailpiece enters the separator, it causes the floating idler to move away further from the feed module and thereby increases the ingestion angle. A large ingestion angle allows thicker mailpieces to pass through the nip without substantially increasing the nipping forces.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 23, 1999
    Date of Patent: August 21, 2001
    Assignee: Pitney Bowes Inc.
    Inventors: Steven H. Joyce, James A. Salomon
  • Patent number: 6263258
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for dispensing paper media is disclosed. The apparatus comprises an engagement device disposed proximate a first side of the paper media. The engagement device contacts the first side of the paper media to urge the paper media in a dispensing direction and a retract direction, according to a command from a processor. The apparatus also comprises a stripper device disposed proximate a second side of the paper media so as to avoid contact with only one paper media unit disposed between the stripper device and the engagement device, but so as to at least intermittently contact a second paper media unit when more than one paper media unit is disposed between the stripper device and the engagement device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 3, 1999
    Date of Patent: July 17, 2001
    Inventor: Stanley P. Dabrowski
  • Patent number: 6234470
    Abstract: A feeding rotatable member, a conveying rotatable member and a separating rotatable member are driven by a sheet feeding motor, a feeding motor and a separating motor, respectively, which are independent driving means to thereby feed an original. The separation and conveyance of the original are effected while the opening amount between the conveying rotatable member and the separating rotatable member is changed by a sheet thickness adjusting motor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 11, 1999
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2001
    Assignee: Canon Denshi Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Katsuhiko Okitsu, Masashi Shimamura
  • Patent number: 6206368
    Abstract: In a paper transport device, a first roller serving as a separation roller is situated underneath a second roller serving as a document feed roller, together forming a roller pair. A rotary shaft of the separation roller is biased upward toward the document feed roller by means of an elastic element. One end of the rotary shaft is connected to a drive shaft via a coupler while a connecting bar is joined to the other end of the rotary shaft obliquely from above. An extreme end of the connecting bar opposite to the rotary shaft is attached to a support plate fixed to a main body of the paper transport device in such a way that the connecting bar can swing about pivot pin fixed to the support plate. In the paper transport device thus constructed, one end of the rotary shaft fitted to the coupler acts as a point of support, allowing the other end of the rotary shaft to move downward overwhelming an upward-lifting force of the elastic element when forced downward by the connecting bar.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 8, 1999
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2001
    Assignee: Kyocera Mita Corporation
    Inventors: Hiroshi Kobayashi, Masayuki Kakuta, Jun Kusakabe, Masaki Deguchi, Yutaka Aso, Kuniaki Araishi, Shigeo Kurando
  • Patent number: 6199855
    Abstract: A paper feeding apparatus for an office automation system constructed to accommodate the storage of paper, a sheet feeder that guides paper to travel in a selected direction of travel, and a device that aligns paper that is being stored to conform to the state of the feeder.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 31, 1999
    Date of Patent: March 13, 2001
    Assignee: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Sang-Won Choeng, Jin-Ho Park, Heung-Kyu Jang, Seung-Taik Hwang
  • Patent number: 6199854
    Abstract: A machine for processing documents has a document feeder adapted to selectively adjust document feed rate and interdocument separation. The document feeder has a feeder surface for feeding documents into the machine. There is a nip between the feeder surface and a separator surface. The end document of a stack is urged, singly into the nip and advanced therebeyond by the feeder surface. The separator surface restrains the remaining documents of the stack. A control adjusts the speed of the separator surface to be continuously variable and independent of the speed of said feeder surface, with the separator surface speed adjusted to optimize the document feed rate, optimize interdocument separation, and minimize damage to the documents being fed into the machine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 1998
    Date of Patent: March 13, 2001
    Assignee: Unisys Corporation
    Inventors: Michael N. Tranquilla, J. Michael Spall
  • Patent number: 6189881
    Abstract: A sheet dispensing apparatus includes at least one pair of sheet stores, and a transport system for transporting sheets from the stores to a dispense position. The transport system includes, for each pair of sheet stores, a common feed member which, upon relative movement between the common feed member and the stores, can be moved between a pair of feed positions in each of which it engages a sheet in a respective one of the pair of stores so as to enable sheet(s) to be withdrawn from the corresponding store. The common feed member is able to take up also a neutral position in which, even if actuated, no sheets are fed from either store.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 11, 1998
    Date of Patent: February 20, 2001
    Assignee: De La Rue International Limited
    Inventors: Roger Walter Bolton, John Gerwyn Price, Deborah Suzanne Taylor
  • Patent number: 6175775
    Abstract: A method and an apparatus for optimizing a production output of a processing device for processing flat articles, the processing device including at least one processing arrangement for receiving and processing the flat articles and which has function parameters controllable through actuators. Actual values of the function parameters are detected. Deviations of the actual values of the function parameters from set values are thereafter evaluated according to an empirically determined algorithm. A correction value for at least one of the actuators is calculated based on results of the above evaluation, and the actuator is operated based on the correction value for controlling the function parameters.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 14, 1996
    Date of Patent: January 16, 2001
    Assignee: Grapha-Holding AG
    Inventor: Roland Grunder
  • Patent number: 6168146
    Abstract: A sheet feeding apparatus has a pair of feeding roller and separating roller an inter-shaft distance changing mechanism for the pair of rollers, and sheet detecting means, and a sheet fed is rammed against the surface on which the feeding roller and the separating roller overlap each other to thereby correct skew feeding, and the feeding roller and the separating roller are moved away from each other to thereby feed the sheet. When the passage of the fed sheet between the feeding roller and the separating roller is detected the feeding roller and the separating roller assume a state in which sheet feeding is impossible. By the above-described operation being performed for each sheet, the correction of skew feeding and the separation of a sheet are effected by the feeding roller and the separating roller.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 1999
    Date of Patent: January 2, 2001
    Assignee: Canon Denshi Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Hiroshi Komuro, Kazuhide Sugiyama, Minoru Sashida, Katsuhiko Okitsu
  • Patent number: 6155556
    Abstract: Information relating to the characteristics of the documents contained in a document cassette 16 is stored in a button memory 22 on the cassette housing and is read when the cassette 16 is inserted into a document feeding apparatus. The information is processed and correlated with data stored in the memory 74 of a control unit 70 to determine the optimum settings for a mechanism 10 for picking such documents. In particular, during a pick operation, a predetermined number of pulses are supplied to a stepper motor 50, so that when the friction belt 30 is moved into engagement with the documents of the cassette 16, an optimum pressure is exerted by the belt 30 on the documents in the cassette 16. A retard roller 52 is then moved to an optimum position in relation to the belt 30.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 1998
    Date of Patent: December 5, 2000
    Assignee: NCR Corporation
    Inventors: Andrew Lynch, Robert J. Suttie, George Petrie
  • Patent number: 6135440
    Abstract: A belt (28) is moved into contact with a sheet (70) to be fed from the stack (18) under the control of a solenoid (48), which when energized causes pivoting of a crank mechanism (42) and an pulley (26) which supports the belt (28). The belt (28) frictionally engages the sheet (70) as to separate it from the stack (18) and move it into engagement with feed rollers (56) of a transport mechanism. The belt (28) is then retracted from the sheet (70) which is moved away from the stack (18) by the feed rollers (56). After a predetermined time period, the belt (28) is moved into contact with the next sheet of the stack (18) to be fed and the process is repeated until the desired number of sheets have been fed from the stack (18). The belt (28) is driven so that it rotates continuously during the pick operation and is brought to rest on retraction of the belt (28) after the final sheet has been picked from the stack (18).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 13, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 24, 2000
    Assignee: NCR Corporation
    Inventors: Andrew Lynch, David J. McMillan, John A. Peebles
  • Patent number: 6135441
    Abstract: A two-stage document singulating apparatus includes first and second singulators disposed along a document feed path. The first singulator acts to separate individual documents from a stack which are subject to a stack advance mechanism force. The second singulator separates multifeeds that pass through the first singulator and which are no longer subject to the stack advance mechanism force.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 16, 1997
    Date of Patent: October 24, 2000
    Assignee: Pitney Bowes Inc.
    Inventors: Eric A. Belec, Donald E. Barker, Steven E. Cohen, James A. Salomon, Denis J. Stemmle, Sr.
  • Patent number: 6129347
    Abstract: A substrate feeding system, and printers that use such feeding systems, that includes a feed roll and a retard roll that form a nip, a nudger roll for advancing a substrate from a substrate stack toward the nip, and an entrance guide between the nudger roll and the nip. The entrance guide has a contact surface that forms an angle of more than 100.degree. with the direction of motion of the substrate. The entrance guide further including a top section over which the substrate moves as it advances into the nip. The entrance guide is beneficially pivotally mounted such that when a retard roll is removed the entrance guide pivots out of the way, and such that when a retard roll is in place the entrance guide moves into position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 10, 2000
    Assignee: Xerox Corporation
    Inventors: Janice S. Brooks, John D. Gramlich, Thomas P. Lambert, Dean Thomas, Michael J. Diehl, James T. Kayko, Gregory N. Carpenter
  • Patent number: 6120018
    Abstract: The present invention provides a sheet feeding apparatus comprising a pair of rotary drive shafts disposed in parallel with each other and rotated in the same direction, a sheet feed roller provided on one of the rotary drive shafts, and a reverse rotation roller provided on the other rotary drive shaft and urged against the sheet feed roller, and wherein sheets are separated and fed one by one between the sheet feed roller and the reverse rotation roller, and further wherein at least one of the sheet feed roller and the reverse rotation roller is provided with a through hole through which the rotary drive shaft passes, and the through hole has an intermediate portion through which the rotary drive shaft passes, and an escape portion provided at an end and adapted to permit inclination of the rotary drive shaft to maintain parallelism between one roller and the other roller if the rotary drive shaft is inclined.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 1999
    Date of Patent: September 19, 2000
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Masao Amano
  • Patent number: 6116589
    Abstract: The sheet feeding device comprises a frame with a fixed receptacle for the sheets and pick-up rollers mounted on a first shaft which is pivotingly fitted on the frame by means of a rocking support device. A second shaft is linked to a motor and bears, by means of two pivotingly mounted support members, the first shaft and the rollers. Two pinions integral with the shafts and an intermediate pinion provided with a braking member allow the rollersto be brought into rotation starting from the shaft. Accordingly, the latter commands rotation of the entire support device and presses the rollers against the uppermost sheet with a surface force which increases when the resistance to movement of the uppermost sheet increases. Extremely reliable paper feeding operation is achieved as a result, with a simple construction method and at low cost.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 1997
    Date of Patent: September 12, 2000
    Assignee: Olivetti-Lexikon S.p.A.
    Inventor: Giuseppe Bortolotti
  • Patent number: 6089563
    Abstract: The invention provides a paper supply apparatus for an image reading apparatus, an image reading apparatus with a paper supply apparatus and a paper supply apparatus which can be used suitably with an image scanner wherein a large amount of paper sheets can be taken out one by one with certainty and read successively and rapidly. The paper supply apparatus successively supplies paper sheets accommodated therein to a paper transport mechanism along which an optical image reading mechanism is disposed, and comprises a paper supply hopper, a paper supply roller located above the paper supply hopper for forwarding the paper sheets accommodated in the paper supply hopper, a paper supply roller driving mechanism for rotating the paper supply roller, and a paper separation mechanism for preventing two or more paper sheets forwarded by the paper supply roller from being sent to the paper transport mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 30, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 18, 2000
    Assignee: Fujitsu, Ltd.
    Inventors: Yoshihiro Takashimizu, Toshiaki Anzai, Seigo Umeda, Hiroyuki Maruyama, Tadayoshi Nakata, Toshiaki Kumagai, Rika Nishiwaki
  • Patent number: 6082729
    Abstract: A sheet feeding mechanism including a pick apparatus for selectively moving a sheet of media from a stack. The invention is a counter rotating roll design that uses staggered and nested rolls to achieve separation. The invention includes a separator roll mounted on a first shaft between first and second `D` shaped pick tires mounted on a second shaft. A kicker is mounted on the first shaft along with the separation roll. The kicker flexes as it engages the stack when the shaft is rotated and, after it has rotated around, pushes media remaining on the separation roll back onto the stack.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 15, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 4, 2000
    Assignee: Hewlett-Packard Company
    Inventor: Martin Jay Padget
  • Patent number: 6059280
    Abstract: A shaft portion of a retard roller is supported by a pair of supporting members so that the retard roller can be assuredly supported and easily detached. One of the pair of supporting members is provided so as to be movable in the axial direction of the shaft portion. By moving the movable supporting member in a direction of separating from the shaft portion, the retard roller can be detached. A regulation device regulates movement of the movable supporting member in the direction of separating from the shaft portion at a position where the pair of supporting members engage with the shaft portion and is provided on a guide cover for blocking an opening for mounting/detaching the retard roller.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 20, 1996
    Date of Patent: May 9, 2000
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Tsuyoshi Yamauchi, Akimitsu Hoshi, Yukitoshi Takeuchi
  • Patent number: 6059279
    Abstract: A retard sheet feeder-separator for separating and sequentially feeding sheets with a frictional sheet feeding roller, driven via a drive train by an intermittently connected rotational drive system, feeding an individual sheet past an engaging frictional retard roller, forming a sheet retard nip therewith for holding back the other sheets, to a downstream sheet feeding nip. A flywheel having a rotational moment of inertia substantially greater than that of the drive train and the sheet feeding roller is connected to the outer end of the drive train to reduce kickback of the retarded sheets in the retard nip, especially where the retard roller is rotatable forward with a high torque drag but has kickback upon release of a fed sheet from the retard nip.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 1998
    Date of Patent: May 9, 2000
    Assignee: Xerox Corporation
    Inventor: Stephen J. Wenthe, Jr.
  • Patent number: 6050563
    Abstract: An electromechanical friction feed device for controlling the single feed of sheet-like articles from a stack of such articles has a feed belt and stripper wheel that are used to draw a single article from the bottom of the stack to the discharge section of the feeder. The stripper wheels slowly rotate in a direction opposite to the feed movement to hold the penultimate sheet and those above it in a stack while the lowermost product is translated by the feed belt through the machine. The reverse rotation of the stripper wheel is accomplished using a dual ratchet mechanism along with unidirectional needle bearing assemblies that provide a smooth, continuous rotation of the stripper wheels. The two ratchet mechanisms are driven 180.degree. out of phase with respect to one another to achieve the smooth continuous stripper wheel rotation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 1998
    Date of Patent: April 18, 2000
    Assignee: Multifeeder Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Arild Vedoy, Mark Nordling, Neal F. Nordling
  • Patent number: 6042099
    Abstract: A sheet feeding apparatus capable of separating and feeding sheets each having a flap like an envelope. In the sheet feeding apparatus, when stacked sheets are delivered by a pickup roller supported liftably, and separated one by one by a feed roller for rotating in a sheet feed direction and a retard roller for rotating in an opposite direction to the sheet feeding direction, the pickup roller is moved up and down a plurality of times until a flap of the delivered sheet passes between the feed roller and the retard roller, which makes it possible to prevent buckling of the sheet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 27, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 28, 2000
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Hiroaki Takagishi
  • Patent number: 6032945
    Abstract: A sheet transport apparatus capable of applying a predetermined force for transporting any kind of paper, including a sheet of thin paper, without forming transport wrinkles in the paper caused by a nipping pressure. The apparatus includes a hard roller 114 and a soft roller 112 for nipping a sheet of paper 10 therebetween. The soft roller is driven to transport the sheet using a frictional force generated from the nipping pressure applied by the soft and hard rollers. The hard roller is in a barrel-shape having a predetermined radial curvature "R", such that the nipping pressure decreases gradually along its axis from the center toward the periphery of a nipping face between two rollers. This causes a compressive stress against the sheet to shift smoothly from a portion of the sheet nipped by the soft and hard rollers to a portion free from the nipping pressure. Thus, the formation of transport wrinkles in the sheet can be prevented.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 20, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 7, 2000
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventor: Tsutomu Miura
  • Patent number: 6003857
    Abstract: A singulator apparatus includes a forwardly driving device and a reverse driving mechanism which operate together to separate individual articles from a stack of articles being transported thereto from an upstream feeding device. The singulator further includes a sensor which detects the presence of articles at the articles ingestion nip defined between the forwardly driving device and the reverse driving mechanism. A controller stops operation of the feeding device upon detection of the presence of articles by the sensor and initiate feeding by the feeding device if no articles are sensed by the sensor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 3, 1997
    Date of Patent: December 21, 1999
    Assignee: Pitney Bowes Inc.
    Inventors: James Salomon, Dennis C. Inglesias, Robert P. Rebres, Anthony E. Yap
  • Patent number: 6000689
    Abstract: An automatic paper feeder comprises: a pick roller for picking out paper accommodated in a paper cassette; a separation roller to which a torque limiter is connected, and which separates the paper picked out by the pick roller to feed the paper one sheet at a time; means for moving the separation roller into contact with or away from the pick roller; a lifter for lifting the paper accommodated in the paper cassette to cause the paper to be moved into contact with or away from the pick roller; and means for driving the lifter. The means for moving the separation roller into contact with or away from the pick roller and the means for driving the lifter are realized by a single driving means.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 17, 1996
    Date of Patent: December 14, 1999
    Assignee: Mitsubishi Denki Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Ichiro Furuki, Takaaki Kase, Masahiko Shimizu, Keiichi Fukazawa, Yousuke Kobayashi
  • Patent number: 5996990
    Abstract: A sheet feeding apparatus which includes a sheet holder holding at least one sheet to be fed. A pick-up roller feeds the at least one sheet from the sheet holder in a sheet feeding direction. A separating roller is provided at a lower reach of the pick-up roller. This separating roller receives a reverse torque in an opposite direction of the sheet feeding direction through a torque limiter. A feeding roller is provided opposite the separating roller and feeds the at least one sheet from the pick-up roller in the sheet feeding direction. Further, a frictional element is provided to increase a rotational load of the separating roller.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 1997
    Date of Patent: December 7, 1999
    Assignee: Ricoh Company, Ltd.
    Inventor: Yasuhiro Kawashima
  • Patent number: 5975516
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a sheet conveying apparatus comprising a separating mechanism and a conveying mechanism. The separating mechanism separates a plurality of sheets to convey it one by one. The separating mechanism applies a friction force to the sheet to be conveyed in a direction opposite to the sheet conveying direction. The separating mechanism has a plurality of separating members disposed in a direction perpendicular to the sheet conveying direction. The conveying mechanism receives and conveys the sheet separated by the separating mechanism. The conveying mechanism has a plurality of conveying rollers disposed in a direction perpendicular to the sheet conveying direction. An outermost profile width of the conveying rollers in a direction perpendicular to the sheet conveying direction is smaller than that of the separating rollers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 2, 1998
    Date of Patent: November 2, 1999
    Assignee: Minolta Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Noritoshi Maruchi, Koji Higashikawa, Tohru Murakami
  • Patent number: 5971389
    Abstract: A singulator adapted for feeding articles of varying thickness is comprised of a driver with a movable and resiliently biased retarder, called a dancer. The dancer moves back and forth along the article flow path, in response to the passage through the nip of the articles being singulated, to automatically set the gap at the singulator nip. A dancer body motion may be linear or pivoting. The path of article travel through the singulator nip is at an angle to the downstream article flow path. Thus, when a takeaway device pulls on the article, the dancer moves to open the singulator gap slightly to enable the article to more freely be taken away. A preferred dancer has an endless belt and is spring biased to lightly contact the driver at the nip in the absence of an article; and, periodic reversal of driver direction engages the dancer belt surface at the nip and moves it upstream, thereby exposing a new surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 1, 1997
    Date of Patent: October 26, 1999
    Assignee: Documotion, Inc.
    Inventors: Roman M. Golicz, Stefan G. Golicz
  • Patent number: 5954329
    Abstract: A document feeder which includes a separator mechanism having a first separator member and a second separator member for separating and feeding document originals one by one into a document transportation path. The first separator member is provided in a main body, and the second separator member is provided in a cover which covers a portion of the main body and is adapted to be pivotally opened. With the cover being closed, the second separator member is positioned with respect to the first separator member by a positioning mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 12, 1998
    Date of Patent: September 21, 1999
    Assignee: Mita Industrial Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Hiroshi Kobayashi, Toru Tanjo, Hiroyuki Harada, Kazuhisa Kondo, Jun Kusakabe, Masahiro Sako
  • Patent number: 5954328
    Abstract: Disclosed is a paper feed mechanism in which copy paper stacked on a paper support member such as a manual insertion tray is fed along the sheet transport direction in a nipped state between an upper roller and a lower roller. The upper roller has, on its outer surface in the described order with respect to the rotational direction, a non-contact area which is not brought into pressing contact with the copy paper and the lower roller, a first contact area which comes into pressing contact with the copy paper and the lower roller and whose frictional coefficient relative to copy paper is set small, and a second contact area which comes into pressing contact with the copy paper and the lower roller and whose frictional coefficient relative to copy paper is set large. The lower roller is mounted on a torque limiter.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 7, 1997
    Date of Patent: September 21, 1999
    Assignee: Mita Industrial Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Fumio Hatanaka
  • Patent number: 5941519
    Abstract: In an automatic document feeder (ADF), a document separating mechanism includes a separator belt. Documents stacked on a tray are caused to abut against the separator belt at their leading edges and then introduced into a nip between the belt and a feed roller to be separated one by one. The angle at which the documents abut against the separator belt is variable. The separator belt is movably mounted on a guide pivotable about the shaft of a separator roller. The above angle refers to an angle between the surface of the documents stacked on the tray and the surface of the portion of the separator belt against which the documents abut.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 18, 1997
    Date of Patent: August 24, 1999
    Assignee: Ricoh Company, Ltd.
    Inventors: Shinji Imoto, Masahiro Minato, Takashi Fujii
  • Patent number: 5934665
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a separation mechanism for separating and feeding paper sheet. The respective convex portions and concave portions of the conveying roller and the separating roller are opposed to each other in a state of different-steps so as not to be brought into contact with each other. The conveying roller is rotated in the normal direction which is the same as that of feeding the paper sheet and the separating roller is rotated in the reverse direction to that of feeding the paper sheet. The separation mechanism for the fed paper sheet for separating sheet by sheet a plurality of manuscript document sheets piled on the document sheet tray is formed such that the diameter of the separating roller is made smaller than that of the conveying roller and the frictional coefficient of the separating roller is also made smaller than that of the conveying roller.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 15, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 10, 1999
    Assignee: Ricoh Company, Ltd.
    Inventor: Rikio Kasahara
  • Patent number: 5931455
    Abstract: A sheet feeder for feeding a sheet from a sheet stacker. The sheet feeder includes: a main body of the sheet stacker for holding plural stacked sheets; a movable bottom plate, provided on the bottom portion of the main body and supported bivotally on an axis, for supporting the plural stacked sheets; a lifting lever for lifting the movable bottom plate; and plural pickup rollers, aligned on an axis in a direction perpendicular to a sheet feeding direction, for having a pressure contact with a sheet of the plural stacked sheets on the movable bottom plate, and for feeding the sheet from the main body in the sheet feeding direction. In the sheet feeder, a protruded portion is formed either on the movable bottom plate or on the lifting lever so that a contact portion where the movable bottom plate comes in contact with the lifting lever is of a point contact, and the contact portion is provided at the center of the closest two of the pickup rollers in the direction of their axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 31, 1997
    Date of Patent: August 3, 1999
    Assignee: Konica Corporation
    Inventors: Susumu Okui, Makoto Tamura
  • Patent number: 5927706
    Abstract: The present invention provides an automatic original supplying apparatus in which originals are stacked on an original tray as an original bundle and the originals in the original bundle are separated one by one from an uppermost one or from a lowermost one by a separation portion disposed at one side of the original tray. The apparatus comprises a guide passage for directing the original bundle to the separation portion, and a guide member provided at a tip end of the guide passage for upward and downward pivotal movement so that, when the originals are separated from the uppermost one, the guide member is rocked upwardly to protrude upwardly from the guide passage in an inclined fashion to thereby push a tip end of the original bundle to be directed to said separation portion, and, when the originals are separated from the lowermost one, the guide member is rocked downwardly to be retarded from the guide passage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 1996
    Date of Patent: July 27, 1999
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Masakazu Hiroi, Kazuhiro Matsuo, Haruo Naruse, Takuya Terae
  • Patent number: 5915684
    Abstract: The present invention provides a sheet supplying apparatus with a sheet stacking plate on which a plurality of sheets can be stacked, a sheet supply unit for successively supplying the sheets rested on the sheet stacking plate one by one, and a sheet regulating device for regulating a tip end of the sheet stack rested on the sheet stacking plate. The sheet supply unit has a rotary member and the rotary member has a cooperation portion for switching regulation and release of the tip end of the sheet stack by the sheet regulating device. Further, when the rotary member is rotated in a sheet conveying direction, the sheet regulating device is shifted by the cooperation portion to a position where the regulation of the tip end of the sheet stack is released.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 7, 1997
    Date of Patent: June 29, 1999
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Daigo Nakagawa, Toshiaki Saito, Akemi Nishimaki